Caesar salad has always been my absolute favorite way to eat a big bowl of romaine. I'm a big proponent of homemade salad dressings and can't believe it took me this long to make my own Caesar dressing! My inspiration for making my own version came from seeing far too many 'globs' of Caesar dressing served at restaurants and don't even get me started on the ingredient list. It can unfortunately be made into a very unhealthy addition to your salad. So here is my solution: a Caesar dressing that you can feel good about putting in your body and still enjoy the delicious, garlicky, creamy goodness! I don't use any egg in this recipe and if you want to make it 100% vegan, please just omit the anchovy past. I've served this up at a few events recently and it's been a big hit! The perfect recipe to add to your rotation. Enjoy!
Dressing (makes ~ 1 cup)
½ cup raw cashews, soaked in water (overnight or at least 1 hour)
¼ - ⅓ cup water
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp lemon juice
½ tbsp honey mustard
1 small garlic clove
½ tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp anchovy paste (omit for vegan version)
1 tsp nutritional yeast
Salt & pepper to taste
Optional salad toppings: chopped fresh parsley, pine nuts, pumpkin seeds, roasted chickpeas, hemp seeds
Soak cashews in a bowl of water overnight, or for at least an hour. Drain and rinse.
Prepare the dressing: Add the cashews and all other dressing ingredients (except water, salt and pepper) into a high-speed blender, and blend on high until the dressing is super smooth. Add water slowly to adjust for desired consistency. Add salt and pepper to taste and adjust other seasonings, if desired. Set aside.
Prepare the lettuce: If using kale: de-stem the kale and then finely chop the leaves. Wash and dry in a salad spinner. Place into extra large bowl. If using Romaine, chop up the romaine into bite-sized pieces. Rinse and then spin dry. Place greens into bowl. You should have roughly 5-6 cups chopped greens.
Assemble: Add dressing onto lettuce and toss until fully coated. Season with a pinch of salt and mix again. Sprinkle on topping of choice.
Serve immediately or dressing will keep in the refrigerator for up to a week.